Our honorary Board is made up of corporate professionals and food and wine industry members that work with the management team to drive the strategic direction of the business.


RADEK SALI (Chairman)

Radek is the Chairman and Founder of Light Warrior Group and the former CEO of Swisse Wellness. Mr Sali says: “It is a fantastic honour and privilege to take part in supporting one of the world’s best and most iconic food and wine festivals. John, the board and the team have created an amazing legacy and I cannot wait to be a part of the next exciting phase of growth. My first job was in a pizza shop and throughout my whole life I have been involved in food and nutrition. I have immense passion for the industry, its people and creativity. Most importantly, I know the experience of Victoria’s food and wine is second to none.”


Director and Chairman John Haddad is Chairman of The Taverns Group of Hotels.

Chairman of Melbourne Food and Wine Festival since 2004 and Board member of Victorian Major Events Company since 1991. John Haddad is a passionate and involved supporter of the arts community and is a Patron of the Victorian Arts Centre. He held the position of Chairman of the Australian National Academy of Music for eight years until 2008. He is Emeritus Chairman of Art Centre Melbourne Foundation Board of Governors.

STEPHEN ADRIAN (Director and Corporate Governance Chairman)

Partner at ShineWing Australia

Stephen has been with the firm for more than three decades. Stephen skill areas include finance, tax and business structures. He is a director for a number of private companies, and a past director of listed public
companies. Stephen authors the Company Directors Manual, recommended by the Australian Institute of Company Directors. He is the secretary of Victorian Traditional Owners Funds Ltd, an entity established by the Victorian overnment to assist traditional owner groups invest Native Title Settlement amounts. Stephen is a Chartered Accountant, a Fellow of the Taxation Institute of Australia and a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. He has been a director of Melbourne Food and Wine Festival since November 2012. He serves on the Corporate Governance committee and is the Audit and Finance representative.


Mat has a global perspective on the Consumer Packaged Goods and Retail industry. During his 20+ year career at Mars Inc. he worked in a number of senior roles, including at the GM and Director level. Mat lived in the UK and Belgium for over 5 years and in his last role he was the Vice President of Europe and Eurasia for Mars Chocolate, a large diverse region with over 50 countries. He was also a key member of the global marketing leadership team.

After a long career with Mars, Mat returned back to Australia for a senior role at Coles Supermarkets, where he was the General Manager - Marketing. After his role at Coles Mat went on to work across multiple industry sectors.

Mat has a track record of leading world class business development and has always left a positive legacy in every role that he has had. He has 2 Business Degrees and has enjoyed executive study at Melbourne Business School, London Business School and Harvard University.

CHRIS NOLAN (Director)

Chief Operating Officer at Starcom MediaVest Group

Chris joined Starcom MediaVest Group in Melbourne as Managing Director in 2005 and in 2009 was elevated to COO across the national Starcom network, where his focus is driving operational excellence to maintain SMG’s market leadership position in Australia. Chris has more than 15 years experience in the media industry and has experience across a broad portfolio of advertisers including ANZ Banking Group, Suncorp, General Motors, Mars, Snooze and Nike. Prior to joining Starcom, Chris was Managing Partner at Mitchell & Partners, where he spent seven years. He was also a Director of Mitchell-owned Stadia Media and Executive Director of e-mitch. Chris has a Bachelor of Science and Masters in Marketing from Monash University. 


Gordon has over 30 years’ experience in the wine industry, from production to marketing and sales. He has worked for the Rathbone Wine Group, which owns Yering Station, Mount Langi Ghiran and Xanadu Wines, for the past eighteen years as Commercial Director. Gordon has a Bachelor of Agricultural Science, a Bachelor of Oenology and a Masters in International Business.


Ms Crawford is an experienced banking professional with 19 years of global finance experience. With a dual role as head of Westpac's Institutional Bank for Victoria and Global head of Large Corporate, Infrastructure & Resources. Ms Crawford says: "Joining the board represents an exciting opportunity to leverage my international corporate experience, commercial skills and passion for community engagement.”